Dansby Swanson hits first home run as a Cub in 5-2 win vs. Padres

Defense also took center stage, highlighted by a fine play from third baseman Nick Madrigal.

SHARE Dansby Swanson hits first home run as a Cub in 5-2 win vs. Padres
The Cubs’ Dansby Swanson rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run against the San Diego Padres during the seventh inning at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs’ Dansby Swanson rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run against the San Diego Padres during the seventh inning at Wrigley Field.

Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Dansby Swanson’s first home run as a Cub landed in the left-field basket during a wind-blown day game at Wrigley Field.

That’s bingo.

“I feel like I got a good glimpse of what Wrigley wind can do,” said Swanson, who’d been on a four-game hitless streak entering Thursday after a hot start to the season. “That was obviously cool. It’s a special place, and to get the first one out of the way is definitely a good feeling.”

Swanson’s blast in the seventh inning gave the Cubs an insurance run in an eventual 5-2 win against the Padres that gave them the series victory.

“A little special place here, to hit your first one and have the basket catch it,” manager David Ross said.

Swanson’s only other homer at Wrigley came when he and the Braves were in town on June 24, 2019. That one landed in the right-field basket.

“People were giving me a hard time about [being] a basketball player,” Swanson said. “Which, in my next life, that’s definitely what I want to be — a corner-three specialist.”

Thursday’s game was the warmest of the series, and despite the wind blowing in, the Cubs’ offense was powered mostly by the long ball. Eric Hosmer homered against his former team in the second inning, sending a high heater over the center-field wall. Then Nelson Velazquez got his barrel to an inside sinker, putting it in the left-field bleachers. That was the Cubs’ fourth set of back-to-back homers this season.

‘Game-saving’

With the Cubs up by three in the top of the seventh, the Padres had runners on first and second with two outs. Ross brought in reliever Keegan Thompson to face Fernando Tatis Jr., who hit a soft chopper to third on the first pitch.

“I thought initially, off the bat, I would have no chance at him at first,” third baseman Nick Madrigal said. “I know he gets down the line. But I had a good read on it.”

Madrigal, who converted from second base this year, fielded the ball off his front foot and made a running throw to get out of the inning.

“That was the game-saving play,” Ross said.

Outfielders in fine form

All the metrics suggested the hard fly ball off Tatis’ bat in the fifth would be a hit. He crushed the pitch from starter Hayden Wesneski, sending it into the right-field gap with an exit velocity of 102.6 mph and an expected batting average of .830.

Instead, right fielder Seiya Suzuki sprinted back to the warning track and made the catch at the wall to complete a 1-2-3 inning.

“I wore [Suzuki] out today,” said Wesneski, who held the Padres to one run through five innings. “He’s going to sleep good on the plane.”

It was a strong defensive day all around in the outfield. In another highlight, Velazquez showed his range in the eighth, tracking a fly ball from Manny Machado to the warning track in the left-field gap.

Hendricks back to work

Right-hander Kyle Hendricks made the first start of his rehab assignment in Triple-A Iowa on Thursday, allowing six runs in 1 ⅔ innings.

The Latest
The museum has initiated the transfer after nearly eight months of research into its provenance.
We could argue the size of the rookie’s role in rubbing people the wrong way, but the kind of hate blowing back at her would put anyone on guard.
Christian Acevedo, 18, was sentenced Monday after pleading guilty to murder and attempted murder in the 2022 shootings.
The city is required to provide police escorts for all convention committee personnel who are “delivering credentials to state delegations and the media at their respective hotels.” It also must provide “special” security for “delegates and other dignitaries.”
Iman Bambooyani admitted to jet-setting across the country with four women and paying them thousands of dollars for sex. He’s now agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors.